Hermeneutics: A Boon for Cross-Disciplinary Research

  • Suzanne D’SouzaEmail author
Reference work entry


Hermeneutics has long been used with huge gains in various fields of research as the underpinning paradigm. In particular, Heidegger’s interpretive framework of being and becoming has influenced many a research undertaking owing to its resilience and flexibility in bringing to life the lived experience. However, despite its versatility, hermeneutics is largely overlooked in current research contexts because of its density of ideas and verbosity. Hence, the aim of this chapter is to unpack the main tenets of Heideggerian phenomenology as embodied in Being and Time and make a pioneering effort to underline the implications of such a framework for cross-disciplinary research. Heidegger’s facticity of being is first explicated followed by an overview of the thereness of being which comprises being in the world of care spatially and temporally. In this existential state, verstehen or understanding is an event that occurs when the three fore-closures of the hermeneutic circle – fore-having, fore-sight, and fore-conception, work collaboratively to foreground meaning. Interestingly, in this ontological circle, it is language that serves as the medium of understanding. The benefits this ontic approach offers researchers, notably, those interested in cross-disciplinary research, are manifold. The main elements of hermeneutics provide a unique, flexible framework to examine a range of complexities and open up rich avenues for a multidimensional enquiry. Hermeneutics is indeed a boon for cross-disciplinary research. Harnessing the rich potential of hermeneutics would credit researchers with a sound intellectual base, advance cross-disciplinary research, and optimize the quality of research outcomes.


Heidegger Hermeneutics Ontology Being Becoming Cross-disciplinary research 


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© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Nursing and MidwiferyWestern Sydney UniversitySydneyAustralia

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